Wednesday, 30 November 2016

Peanut Butter & Oat Snacks

This recipe is a great little protein snack which I started to make for my husband when he started to lift weights as buying them in were just so expensive, due to an arm injury the weights have stopped for a while, so these did too, but they are a great snack so I've made a batch and popped them in the freezer

1 1/4 cup of plain flour
3/4 cup light brown sugar
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 cup butter
1 1/2 cup oats

peanut butter
raspberry jam

Put flour, sugar & salt in a mixer, add butter, blend until it forms a dough 

Transfer to a bowl and knead in the oats 
Reserve 3/4 cup of the dough 
Press the rest of the dough into a square baking pan with the bottom and sides greased with butter
Spread a thin layer of the peanut butter on first , then the same again with the jam over the top 

Crumble the reserved dough over the top of the jam

Bake at 180c for 20 mins

Cool totally in the pan then cut into breakfast size bars and enjoy
Freeze in separate portions so they can be taken out of the freezer and popped in lunches as an energy treat in the middle of the day

With this batch I seemed to have some crumble left over, so I added a tablespoon of peanut butter and mixed it altogether, I made small dough balls and popped them on a greased baking sheet and baked with the tray
When they came out of the oven I topped them with a little choc shot to add a little sweetness
One fell in my mouth to taste (totally delicious) and the rest are individually frozen ready for lunch bags

Sunday, 27 November 2016

Mini Chilli Cod Cakes

I happened to make some delicious cod cakes by pure accident! I basically didn't want to faff about with potatoes to make fish cakes as I wanted to make a quick lunch for a friend that was popping in
The cod cakes were born and they were amazing

2 cod fillets
1 red chilli
2 spring onions
1 egg (whisked)
1 tbsp flour
salt and pepper for seasoning

~ flake the cod until all loose
~ finely chop the chilli and spring onions
~ mix together well
~ add half of the whisked egg and season well
~ add the flour and mix well (I find adding the egg and the flour holds the fish together really well)
~ I shaped mine into round balls and flattened slightly on the plate and then refrigerated them for an hour (I managed to make 14)

Whilst they are in the fridge you can make the bread crumbs

2 kingsmill wholemeal thins
season-all seasoning

~ breadcrumb the thins in food processor and add season-all for flavouring
~ take the cod cakes out of the fridge and gently toss in the bowl of bread crumbs covering each cake as much as you can
~ spray a frying pan with frylite (or similar) and gently fry off each cake until cooked, the crumbs will brown slightly and the fish will be lovely and juicy

Serve with salad and enjoy
If you are currently attending Slimming World these work out at less than 1/2 syn each

Friday, 25 November 2016

Home - Decluttering and making our spaces work for us

I'm easily stressed by the amount of clutter that seems to accumulate in our home! I have a good splurge then its like its all back again. Living with all boys I find it difficult to put too much of a feminine stamp on the rooms!
I woke up one morning and thought enough was enough, the boys are back at school, the husband works odd hours, I'm now working part time and also trying to run my own small business, things needed to change.
The best way I imagined was room by room, I made notes (I love lists!) about each room and what their primary function was and decided on a plan, one that I thought I could share as I go along
I started with some downstairs spaces, just totally gutting, deep cleaning and decluttering them
From the front porch, hall stairs and landing, living room and understairs cupboard I've managed to fill 3 bags full for donating

Our living room feels calmer and more cosy, our porch more welcoming, the stairs clear and the storage space actually useable
I still want to add some decorative accessories here and there and I'm always on the search for the perfect sideboard in the living room (one day I'll find it)

I'm all for simpler living, having a budget and I donate all of my decluttering to an amazing charity 'Emmaus'

Wednesday, 23 November 2016

Norfolk Break

Every year there is a break away with the girls, it normally involves a little crafting, a little drinking, lots of cheese and making good memories
I didn't take many snaps I was too busy having a much needed chill out
Our cottage was St Benets in Ludham, and can be found here

Sunday, 20 November 2016

Portobello Mushroom Burger

Whilst continuing to make homemade meat burgers for the family I was trying to find an alternative for myself. I can honestly say I've now found it! and I loved it

I sliced a Portobello mushroom in half and fried in a griddle pan along with red onion
When it was cooked through I added some grated mozzarella cheese on top of one of the slices, once it started to melt I added the other slice of mushroom and fried onions on top and added this stack to a sesame seeded bun
It was truly delicious and I cant wait for burger night again in our house

Saturday, 19 November 2016

The Cornish Dream

After our recent break in the beautiful Cornwall (again) I (again) have the overwhelming urge to be there all the time, its makes my heart literally sing
One day...

Thursday, 17 November 2016

Inspiring Stationery

Part of my small business plan is offering craft and stationery kits, I cannot tell you how happy I am with my first stationery offering, available to purchase here

Tuesday, 15 November 2016

St Michaels Mount - Cornwall

I truly believe that Cornwall is a place where dreams are made or at least dreamt up
Earlier this year whilst on a holiday in Cornwall we took a day trip to the beautiful St Michaels Mount, they have an amazing website to plan your day and the first page has you hooked on the tide viewings

We took the boat ride over and started our tour, sadly the gardens were closed so onwards and upwards to the castle it was, I cannot describe to you the beauty of this place, I mean everything, the buildings the gardens surrounding the walk, the history, the air, just everything

You can see by my photos how much of a beautiful day it was for us, the sky was bright blue and that Cornish flag flying in the breeze was just amazing. The boys loved it, by the time they reached the top and saw the canons and could see across the sea and land they were in awe, they loved joining in with the castle quiz, as they were asking more questions, they were learning more about the myths and history and to be honest so were we

One of my personal favourites inside the castle was the beautiful blue settee, the colours were so vibrant and I could imagine back in the day how grand they were, what really made it for me was knowing that our Queen Victoria had sat on that very sofa! A piece of history just there ..

After a fair few hours of walking, and learning the history and enjoying the area, we took the boat ride back to the mainland where an amazing hot chocolate was most enjoyed

We became members of the National Trust so we can visit more and more of our beautiful heritage and I'm so pleased we did as this day was so memorable for us as a family
Not only does been a member of the National Trust enable us to so many perks but they keep up the good work of maintaining these beautiful places that could otherwise fall into ruin

Sunday, 13 November 2016

Mushroom & Spinach Wellington

Some time ago I reduced and then removed meat from my diet
I feel heathier for doing so but I'm always on the lookout for a good Sunday dinner alternative, especially as I'm still preparing and cooking meat for my family

After much searching and putting a few recipes together I came up with my Mushroom & Spinach Wellington

At home I cook for us so its all trial and error and not really measured out, more look with the eye and see!!
for this wellington I roughly used
ready made puff pastry
3 shallots (finely chopped)
chestnut mushrooms (roughly chopped)
2 cloves garlic (crushed)
2 handfuls of fresh spinach
balsamic vinegar (2 tbsps.)
cherry tomatoes (roughly chop)
toasted pine nuts (sprinkle)

Heat up some olive oil in a pan, and fry off the shallots, mushrooms and garlic
Add the spinach and as it starts to wilt pour over the balsamic vinegar
Add the cherry tomatoes and pine nuts, mix together well and set aside
Roll out your ready made pastry and cut into four
Spoon enough of the mixture into the centre of each one, fold the pastry over each filling and pinch the pastry together so there are no gaps
Turn over and put on your prepared tray (greaseproof paper on a baking tray)
Make a cut on the top of the pastry and using an egg wash (egg and a little water mixed together) brush each pastry until covered
Bake in the oven for about 30 mins
Serve with new potatoes and fresh vegetables
You wont be disappointed
Next time I'll add different ingredients as there are so many variations that can be used for this

Friday, 11 November 2016

Life Lately!

Last year I decided that blogging was too time consuming and I was getting so lost with it all and its true meaning. I got lost from the fact that blogging for me was a little look into our lives at home and a great way to document and save moments in time

I tried to start a new blog earlier this year as the passion for blogging came back and I truly believed that's what I needed to do, but my heart wasn't in it! I kept coming back here to see memories and sigh and giggle
My passion is welling up so much that I've thought sod it, I'm opening up this blog again and making our memories count

So much has changed in the last year
I've settled into a new job, the boys have started another new year at school, our home has had some great improvements.
My small business has grown for the better and I have so much more enthusiasm for it and new designs are always brewing
I've sadly had to say goodbye to all three of moggies, to be truthful I'm hurting a lot and after saying farewell to my last moggie I felt like a huge chunk of my life had gone, especially after having them for 18 years!

I cant wait to share some of what we did last year and our new adventures